March Letter from Zapallal
I’m afraid there won’t be too much news this time as I returned from England in the middle of February. I left very mixed weather behind and came to hot and muggy conditions.
We now have a new Head, Brother Augusto. He replaces Brother Cosme who has gone on exchange to one of our schools in Colombia.
Despite the heat there has been and still is a lot of work being done in the school. The floors of some classrooms have been upgraded with large ceramic tiles. The grounds are looking fine after grass-cutting and a lot of pruning of dead branches. Still quite a bit to be done. We start school on 13th and the 12th will be a general faena – communal work – when hundreds of parents will come in to clean and tidy up the classrooms and work areas.
One of the jobs performed by our maintenance staff was the re-varnishing of desks and checking all the chairs. The desk work meant an initial sanding then two or three coats of varnish with sanding between coats. This amounted to a lot of time and work and then the Ministry of Education sent a lot of new desks and chairs, so much of the work was in vain. Not good timing on their part. We now have the problem of what to do with our old furniture but it is a problem worth having.
In the midst of this work, the education department organised here two staff training sessions, a week each, for primary teachers from here and other schools.
With the hot weather it was quite a surprise early in the morning of 23rd to have a very heavy downpour, something I was much aware of with the beating on my corrugated roof and the entrance of the rain in the several holes therein. The rest of the day was hot and sunny.
Not to be outdone by the parents working in the school I cleaned the windows on one side of the library. They overlook a much used road, so plenty of dust, so plenty of dirt. There are 168 small panes (17”x6”) and twelve larger ones (25”x14”). This has to be doubled as regards cleaning of both sides. To clean the outside – first floor – it is necessary to stretch your arm outside using the space provided by the larger windows. The framework for the windows is rough concrete and it really does make a mess of your arm rubbing against it. A good preparation for Lent!
At the moment our staff are in school – and will be next week as well – for staff training in preparation for the new school year. More of that next time. I apologise for the lack of news and also photos but hope to make up for it next time.
All blessings for a grace-full Lent. God bless.
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